Current sensing is a critical need for detecting system short circuit, thermal management, load balancing, and maximum power point tracking (MPPT) in DC-DC converters. An ultra low-power current sensing and digitization circuit based on a Current-to-Digital Conversion (IDC) technique is presented. The circuit is based digitizing the discharge period of a sampled capacitor without the need for an ADC. Relative to sensing methods based on series resistors and analog-to-digital converters to digitize the sampled current, the proposed circuit achieves higher accuracy with less complexity, and occupies a fraction of the area, and power consumption. The circuit is designed using a 100V compliant 0.35μm CMOS technology for a 60V boost DC-DC converter. For load current ranging from around 0.1 to 1A, the proposed sensor total power consumption is less than 0.57 nano-W and less than 1% measurement error.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationPRIME 2012; 8th Conference on Ph.D. Research in Microelectronics and Electronics
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
Number of pages4
ISBN (Electronic)9783800734429
StatePublished - 2012
Event8th Conference on Ph.D. Research in Microelectronics and Electronics, PRIME 2012 - Aachen, Germany
Duration: Jun 12 2012Jun 15 2012


Other8th Conference on Ph.D. Research in Microelectronics and Electronics, PRIME 2012


  • Capacitor
  • Current-to-Digital Conversion
  • Switching converters

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Instrumentation


Dive into the research topics of 'Ultra-low power current-to-digital sensor for switching DC-DC converters'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this